I worked late tonight. It’s near the end of a quarter, and this particular quarter will also bring the company to the end of a fiscal year. So it’s crunch time. There is a lot of pressure to get stuff out the door.
In spite of that, I’m planning to take a vacation day tomorrow. Beth’s school is going on a field trip to Plimoth [sic] Plantation in Massachusetts. and having never been there myself, I’d kinda like to go. So I worked late tonight to meet my workly obligations.
I was embarrassingly old when I one day realized that the Pilgrims did not come over the Atlantic with Columbus. I’m sure I would have figured that out a lot sooner if I had ever given it an ounce of thought. Just hadn’t until one day I guess! If I’m feeling cocky tomorrow, I’ll pretend that I still think that’s the way it happened. I just like to see the look of horror on a historian’s face.
“Yeah, kids, this is where Columbus parked the Mayflower. They had to hurry and build this fort so they could defend themselves. As soon as it was built, the redcoats showed up, but Paul Revere warned everyone in time.”
That ought to make one of them have a stroke.
I can’t remember where I read this now, but I sure liked it. Maybe it was in a web comic. Anyhow, one guy was saying to another, “What’s there to not like about history? It’s all a bunch of stories about people doing cool things!” That’s my take on history too.
Most of the reading I do any more is non-fiction for that very reason. Historical accounts are really fascinating, and I think the fact that they really did happen makes them even better. I’ve read biographies of most of the founding fathers (McCullough’s John Adams was an excellent read). I’ve read about Lewis & Clark, Ernest Shackelton, Ben Franklin, Alexander Hamilton, Krakatoa, and plenty of others.
What’s more geeky than regular history? Math history! I’ve read “A History of Pi”, “e, The Story of a Number”, “The Nothing That Is” (which is about zero) or “An Imaginary Tale – The Story of SQRT(-1).” Yeah.
Engineering history is another topic I’ve read quite a lot on, including the invention of the telegraph and the first transatlantic cable, as well as the solution to the longitude problem (can’t find your longitude without an accurate clock – and it has to be accurate at sea.) Oh, and I’ve read a book about ENIAC, the first electronic computer. It didn’t use binary by the way. It was base-10. Pretty bizarre stuff.
So. I guess this post pretty much pegs the geek meter.